As we speak, I’m sitting on a ferry from Port Angeles, WA to Victoria, BC. The open seas are not calm. There’s been a wind advisory from the National Weather Service for the entire Pacific Northwest, and at some point, they even closed the Hood Canal floating bridge, which meant we had to detour south for an extra two hours.
In any case, the strained metaphor I’m going for here is that as I’m sitting here on this ferry that’s getting tossed around by the waves, I’m reminded of Chelsea’s up and down last few months. Wins, losses, lean left, lean right, there goes the horizon! At one point it gets wild enough that some audible gasps are heard from the passengers.
Everybody just needs to relax.
It’s a new year, and it’s a new day, and we’re up first in the league. But it’s still the same old season. The win at Spurs turned out to not be a turning point. Perhaps the win at Arsenal last Sunday will prove to be.
Date / Time: Wednesday, January 1, 2020, 12.30 GMT; 7:30am EST; 6pm IST
Venue: Falmer Stadium, Brighton. England
Referee: Stuart Attwell — only the fifth ever Chelsea match for Attwell and the second this season after the 2-2 draw against Sheffield United
Forecast: Cool with a bit of breeze
On TV: BT Sport 1 (UK); NBCSN (USA); Star Sports Select HD1 (India); Canal+ Sport 2, SuperSport3 (NGA); elsewhere
Streaming: BT Sport Live (UK); NBC Sports Live (USA); HotStar (India); DStv Now (NGA)
Brighton & Hove Albion team news: Despite just two wins in their last nine games, Brighton remain in the middle of the table, struggling for relevance but steering clear of the relegation zone. They did beat Bournemouth at home over the weekend, and had claimed scalps from Spurs and Arsenal earlier as well.
Manager Graham Potter will be without Solley March and Jose Izquierdo, but will be confident of taking advantage of Chelsea’s inconsistencies.
Chelsea team news: Tariq Lamptey became the latest hotness from the Chelsea Academy with his game-changing performance on Sunday, but he may have to wait a little bit for his next involvement depending on the fitness levels of Marcos Alonso and Reece James and whether Lampard is willing to give another chance to Emerson.
Otherwise, Chelsea have a full squad available (minus Ruben Loftus-Cheek of course), with Christian Pulisic set to return after a hamstring tweak.
Chelsea’s win against Arsenal maintained our four-point advantage over fifth place, where currently Manchester United are sitting. Just one point behind them are Spurs, level on points with Wolves. Sheffield United, a further point behind, are still in the top four conversation as well.
Would be a great time for a little winning streak.
Previously: There was a time when Chelsea were winning home games, and this was one of them. It was Lampard's first home win as Chelsea manager.